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Jul 28, 2012 02:20 PM

Two Days in Montreal

Visiting for the first time this week. I would appreciate suggestions for lunch and dinner. Where are your favorite places? Nothing fancy or insanely expensive.

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  1. (what days ?)
    What are you looking for ? good wine list? food ethnicity ? ambiance ?

    couple of suggestions (look/google them up) :

    FoodLab at the SAT (much less "lab" than the name pretends) they will have an Italian-ish menu this month (they are open from wed to saturday, I think), small plates, very nice terrasse; could be fun for pre-dinner drinks.

    Hotel Herman (new-ish) : again, small plates, nice wine, was there yesterday and will go back, decor is urban chic) could be a fallback if you go to Lawrence (a few steps away) and they are full.

    Café Ellefsen : for Smorrebrod (open sandwich with fish) and other fish stuff; quite nice if the weather is hot and you do not want to eat cooked/hot food.

    In old montreal (old port actually), for lunch (while walking around) there are 2 "box", the MuvBox, one is a lobster roll place, the other is Porccetta sandwich (I've not tried the latter).


    1 Reply
    1. re: Maximilien

      New hours for the SAT FoodLab recently - it is now Tuesday to Friday only!

    2. Since it's your first time, I would go with the following (mostly listing either landmark places with a lot of history/character or very Montreal-unique places). Also listing places in happening/trendy areas to explore:

      Beautys in the Plateau for a Jewish/deli experience. Go for brunch!
      Burgundy Lion in Little Burgundy for an English gastro-pub experience. Great vibe and decent food.
      Chez Leveque in Outremont for a French bistro experience in quirky surroundings.
      Holder in Old Montreal for a French brasserie experience in the historic part of town.
      Le Jardin de Panos on quant Duluth street for a Greek, family-friendly experience. Also, you can bring your own wine here and save some $.

      8 Replies
      1. re: 514eats

        If I were a tourist and those were the places I went to, I would come away with a pretty dim picture of the food quality in this city...there is so much better food to be had elsewhere (with the exception of Holder, although again, there are better bistros)

        1. re: cherylmtl

          I didn't want to say anything... but yes, I would not recommend any of those places to a tourist...

          1. re: Glaff

            Beauty's is a decent recommendation

            it's definitely a piece of anglo mtl history and worth going to if you had more than 2 days

            1. re: catroast

              Enlighten me with your suggestions then.

        2. re: 514eats

          Nothing quirky about the Leveque's surroundinds; it's Laurier/Outremont bourgeoisie.

          1. re: Maximilien

            You don't find the whole church mockery quirky? Church music playing in the bathroom? Come on! The menus ...?

            1. re: 514eats

              i actually agree with you 514, I dont know why people get labelled as sucht, I always liked the service and food at at chez leveque but never mention it here because someone will take potshots even though i dont live in outremont or consider myself bourgeoisie and if i did whats wrong with that!. My daughters also liked it when visit Montreal. and they like to meetup with friends at Holder.;. We use to go often to jardin panos as nice little terrace in back and great when you have children. I had some food I actually didnt like at PDC but thats what everybody sends tourists to, but this is not best choice for everyone, my children were never really impressed with that resto,decor service or kind of food.. Keep your suggestions coming, I like them, forget naysayers. By the way Lemeacs late night deal is now up to 27$ and occurs later than the late night deal at Chez Leveque.
              The poster is asking for our favourites ...and its good to have some variety and opinion, otherwise just type up a list of the 5 voted best by montreal CHers and close down the

          2. re: 514eats

            Burgundy Lion is a good pub but the food is forgettable at best
            Lemeac over Chez l'Eveque any day of the week (after 10PM menu is great value)

            Need more info as to tastes, budget, etc for more recommendations

          3. This is an exhaustive and recent thread that should help you get started:


            You can also look here:


            And for cheap eats:


            Have fun!

            3 Replies
            1. re: foodinspace

              I love O Noir, the restaurant where you dine in the dark - so exciting and the food is actually really good. You can choose from the menu beforehand or take the 'surprise' option and try to guess what you're eating!

              1. re: Jevita

                Funny, that's completely the opposite of what most posters here have said about it...

                1. re: cherylmtl

                  Perhaps the OP can clarify what type of food, what budget and perhaps the neighbourhood she is looking for.

                  Not too crazy about some of the previous suggestions (except Maximilien) either, but would like to point out that Chez Leveque isn't half as bad as other people make it look. I would take Chez Leveque over Lemeac any day (for their late night special).

                  So here goes my list (with a bias for Mile End).
                  Quintessential tourist things are Smoked Meat (Schwartz's) and bagel (St. Viateur). Or Fairmount bagel, the entire city is divided over who makes the best bagel. Just try both. Cafe in Gamba, Cafe Sardine or Cafe Olimpico for coffee (Olimpico is where the locals hang out, Sardine has some killer donuts, in Gamba is 3rd wave).
                  Beer: Dieu du ciel microbrewery, Dominion Square for cocktails downtown in a retro setting, Bar Waverly if you want to hang with the Ubisoft crowd, big terrace bars in Quartier Latin or St Elizabeth, more swanky rooftop Suite 401.
                  Kazu for Japansese Izakaya, Damas for Syrian Lebanese, Ice House or Dinette Triple Crown for fried chicken en smoked brisket, Magpie for pizza, Nouveau Palais for good diner food, Qing Hua for Chinese Soup Dumplings, Pho Bang New York for vietnamese noodle soup, Lawrence for proper English breakfast (and great for dinner too - gastropub), Kem Coba for delish ice cream and soft serve, Boulangerie Guillaume for the buns aux pommes, Le Comptoir for Charcuterie and wine (or Buvette chez Simone), Portugese roasted chicken along St Laurent (Romados, Chez Janos).
                  Some of the higher end places: Au Pied De Cochon, Joe Beef, Liverpool House, Club Chasse et Peche, Tuckshop. Le Renard for market driven bistro. Le p'tit plateau for great french bistro fare and BYOB. Etc. The list is really too long.

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